My house is never spotless and I am not a clean freak, but I do like things to be reasonably clean and tidy. Here are 10 of my best tips I have to offer on cleaning the family home:
1. Daily cleaning regime
Gone are the days when I can clean the whole house at once, too many little people need my attention for that. I have certain cleaning activities that I do every day and they fit into my school term routine. For example when I come home from the walk to school on Mondays, I know I need to clean the toilets (my boys are so messy). Having a regime of tasks I need to do takes the thinking out of it and I just get to it.
2. Use a timer
I have been using 15 minute blocks for a little while now in my cleaning routine. A task seems much more do-able if it is only short. It also helps with the kids if I tell them I am cleaning for 15 minutes, when the timer finishes I can come and play then. The kids will often occupy themselves for longer than that and I can sometimes even fit in another 15 minute session before they come looking for me again .
3. Go for the minimalist approach
The less there is around the house, the less there is to clean and dust! Finding places where items can be put away and leaving bench tops clear for me also makes things look tidier. This is a work in progress at our house and I am continually removing clutter – it makes such a difference.
4. Have a bathroom caddy
This is also a recent inclusion to my cleaning routine. Now that I have a bathroom caddy of cleaning products in the actual bathroom, it means that when it is bath time, I can supervise the kids and get some cleaning done – clean the toilet, wipe down the benches and mirrors etc. I still have a child safe lock on my bathroom cupboard as the toddler still enjoys emptying the contents of any cupboard he can open, so they caddy is away from little hands.
5. Empty the vacuum
Making sure our cylconic vacuum is empty before I start means the vacuum works more effectively. It is so much easier if I can just keep going with the vacuuming once I have started.
6. Steam clean the microwave
We only really use our microwave for reheating, but even so it still manages to get pretty dirty at times with spillages (not always wiped down by people who will remain nameless!).
The easiest way to clean the microwave is to have a couple of cups of water with a slice of lemon in a microwave safe bowl. Heat the water for a couple of minutes until it is almost boiling, then stop the microwave. Keep the door closed and allow the steam to do its trick with the mess in the microwave. Leave it for about 15 – 20 minutes then wipe down.
7. Use newspaper to clean windows
Scrunched old newspaper works a treat on windows. They don’t leave lint and it is a great way to reuse an existing material. I use a home made cleaning solution of equal parts vinegar and soda water. (Never use tap water as it makes things streaky, distilled water is fine.)
8. Use microfibre cloths
Microfibre cloths are such super cleaning tools. They come in a varitey of price tags, but you can get good quality cloths now for reasonable prices. They work so well as the can remove lots of dust without releasing it into the air and mean you don’t have to use harmful toxic chemicals.
9. Use the dishwasher for things other than dishes
There are so many other household items that you can put in the dishwasher to clean like:
- Fridge shelves
- Kids plastic toys
- Fan grills / vent covers
I have heard you can even put potatoes in the dishwasher to clean them and a friend has also used the dishwasher to defrost a meal!
10. Emergency Wipes
I always have some bathroom and kitchen wipes stashed away for those days when I need to clean in a hurry!
I am sure you would have fab cleaning tips of your own and would be grateful if you could help me add to this list – anything to make cleaning easier!